Caroline Owens album release party

Rising songstress, Caroline Owens, celebrated the release of her new self-titled album, with a concert and party at the Sunset Theatre in Asheboro, NC, this past Friday night. Released on Skyline Records in Nashville, the project features 10 superbly sung songs.

Charles Brady of Radio Music Group welcomed the rising songstress to the stage by stating, “I’ve listened to thousands of songs over the years for radio release. Here’s one of the most unique and special voices that I have ever heard.”

As Caroline & New Company stepped to the mics, the two-time IBMA Momentum Vocalist and SPBGMA Vocalist nominee, explained, “We are going to the sing the entire album for the first half and then have cake!”

The show launched with Caroline belting out Hard Rain as band members: Spencer Strickland on mandolin, Zac McLamb on bass, and Emma Thomas on fiddle were joined by Walker Boone on banjo (subbing for new dad, Chase Bennett) providing solid accompaniment.

Owens’ album features the powerhouse musicianship of Darin Aldridge on guitar and mandolin; Samantha Snyder and Bryan McDowell on fiddle; Kristin Scott Benson and Jason Burleson on banjo; and Zac McLamb and Tim Surrett on bass. Caroline’s current band is well-schooled on the album’s arrangements and their live performance mirrored the recorded sound.

The Denton, NC native then sang the other nine tunes from her Skyline Records Project, concluding with her debut single, Heartbreak Train, composed by Owens herself. Her original tune was named the number one song on the Bluegrass Borderline Charts for 2023. Recognizing her creative talents, Billy Blue Publishing signed her on as a songwriter this spring.

Produced by Darin Aldridge with album art by Laci Mack, Caroline Owens’ Skyline Records CD is both pleasing to the ear and the eye. Songs selected for the project include tunes penned by well-respected bluegrass songwriters such as Ronnie Bowman, Greg Luck, Donna Hughes, Ron Block, Dani Flowers, and Leona Williams to name a few. 

During intermission, attendees were treated to cake and a chance to purchase Caroline’s newly-released album. Once she and the band returned to the stage, they featured songs requested by the audience for their second set.     

Following the event, Owens expressed…

“When you put out an album, you never really know how someone might respond to the music. My goal has always been to choose songs that are relatable to folks. 

Whether it’s a heartbreak song, a love song, or a spiritual hymn, I believe we are all searching for something to cling to—something that connects us to a feeling we’re longing for. So when we went into the studio, I, along with producer, Darin Aldridge, picked songs that we felt would speak to listeners. We incorporated a mix of new and gently used material. (I don’t like to call anything old, because good writing simply never goes out of style.) And while sticking to our bluegrass roots, we chose to feature songs originally covered from trailblazers like Patsy Cline, Lee Ann Womack, and Rhonda Vincent. 

I feel so elated that people have responded to this album through its honesty. The phone calls, messages, emails, cards, it sure does make a gal feel good!

To everyone who has supported the release of my debut album, I am eternally indebted to you for your support. Your outpouring of love and kindness is more than the weight of pure, solid gold. From my grateful heart to yours, thank you.”

This is just the beginning for this rising star. Her voice, the song selection, and the musicianship of this project will leave listeners wanting more. Caroline Owens’ album is available for purchase directly from the label, and on major streaming devices. 

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About the Author

Sandy Hatley

Sandy Chrisco Hatley is a free lance writer for several NC newspapers and Bluegrass Unlimited magazine. As a teenager, she picked banjo with an all girl band called the Happy Hollow String Band. Today, she plays dobro with her husband's band, the Hatley Family.